WINDHOEK, June 13 (Xinhua) -- Health professionals from Namibia and Angola are meeting this week in Nkurenkuru in Namibia's Kavango West region to jointly craft consolidated cross-border collaborative malaria elimination strategies.
Mwalengwa Nghipumbwa, malaria national monitoring and evaluation officer in the Ministry of Health and Social Services, said Wednesday that the aim is to strengthen the countries' ability to fight malaria, prevalent in areas near borders.
Statistics by the Ministry of Health and Social Services show that Namibia recorded 24,000 cases of malaria between January and May this year.
Of these cases, 77 percent were recorded in the Kavango East and West regions. Most cases recorded in the region were also traced to Angola.
According to Nghipumbwa, strategies, which will be replicated across borders will include spraying of the mosquitoes breeding sites, malaria symptoms awareness campaigns as well as advocacy for the cleaning of the environment.
"Our focus is to eliminate 70 percent of where our cases are coming from. If we can achieve this, we anticipate national cases of malaria to drop drastically," she said on Wednesday.
In the interim, Timea Ngwira, Health Director of Kavango East and West regions added that the health professionals are also looking into prescribing similar drugs across borders in treating malaria.
"That is why we need to strengthen cross-border initiatives. This is to ensure that our efforts are uniformed and complementary. Even treatment-wise, we need to consolidate our plans," she said.
According to Ngwira, this is more critical given that people in Angola's Southern Cuando Cubango Province seek and access medical services in the kavango East and West regions.